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FCMB Excites Soccer Fans as COPA Lagos Ends

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First City Monument Bank (FCMB) Limited has restated its commitment to support initiatives geared towards youths, sports and overall national development. The assurance was given by the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive of the Bank, Mr. Ladi Balogun, during the closing ceremony of this year’s COPA Lagos Beach Soccer tournament on December 20, 2015. The tournament, organised by Kinetic Sports Limited and sponsored by the financial institution for the fifth consecutive year, took place from December 18 to 20, 2015 at Eko Atlantic Beach, Victoria Island, Lagos.

Defending champions, Cote D’ivoire retained the trophy this year, while the Super Sand Eagles of Nigeria came second. Koblan Assouan of Cote D’ivoire was voted as the Most Valuable Player. The tournament featured the national beach soccer teams of Nigeria, England, Cote D’ivoire and Lebanon. The Beach soccer teams of Barcelona Football Club of Spain, Kano Pillars, Shooting Stars Sports Club and Pepsi Academy; all of Nigeria, also participated in the highly colourful and entertaining 3-day soccer fiesta.

According to Mr. Balogun, the Bank’s interventions in the area of sports are aimed at developing the minds, body and abilities of the populace, especially youths, to contribute significantly to the growth of the country. ‘’The COPA Lagos Beach soccer tournament provides a platform to bring our customers, Nigerians, soccer fans, families, players and other stakeholders together in an atmosphere of relaxation, excitement and bonding which are very important to healthy living and nation building. This tournament has become one of the most exciting events not just this festive season but during the year’’.

He added that, ‘’Beach Soccer is becoming more popular in Nigeria. We believe that our sponsorship of the tournament in the last five years has helped to raise the profile of the game going by the large turnout of spectators and other dignitaries that have been watching the football matches and other lifestyle events associated with the tournament. We will continue to remain a strong supporter of initiatives that will create opportunities and equip our Nigerian youths for a bright future’’.

Apart from the excitement which FCMB built around the football matches, the Bank also treated guests and customers that attended the fiesta to a VIP treatment at its hospitality lounge. Among the dignitaries that registered their presence at the lounge were Lagos State Commissioner for Sports, Mr. Deji Tinubu; frontline sports administrator, Dr. Amos Adamu, Mr. Tilewa Adebajo, ace comedian Ali Baba.   FCMB also hosted former personalities like Mr. Adebajo, Victor Ikpeba, Mutiu Adepoju, Waidi Akanmu, among others, at the lounge.

Guests and spectators were also provided with opportunity to experience the unique banking services of FCMB as the sales team of the Bank was on ground to showcase its array of valued-added products and services. There was also an ATM installed at the venue by the Bank for easy access to cash and other financial transactions. The tournament also witnessed fashion show and concert with performance from top rated artistes.

Commenting on this year’s tournament, Dr. Adamu, expressed excitement at the growing status of beach soccer in Nigeria and the support provided by corporate bodies like FCMB. According to him, “beach soccer has come to stay and it is growing. Nigerians now know about beach soccer and I sincerely want to thank the organisers of this tournament, FCMB, Pepsi and the other sponsors for living up to expectation”.  Also speaking, Victor Ikpeba said, “this year’s competition was well organized and a memorable experience for me’’. He commended FCMB for its roles at promoting sports development. According to him, ‘’the action of the Bank demonstrates that it means well for the youths and sport, because beach soccer is an exciting game that has the capacity to effectively engage our youths to realise and fulfill their potentials. The involvement of FCMB and other sponsors in COPA Lagos have made the tournament more glamorous’’.

Over the years, FCMB has supported sporting activities that have wide appeal across demographic and socio economic classes in line with its value as a simple, reliable and helpful financial institution.

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Nigerian Bank MD’s colluded with government officials to re-loot recovered Abacha loot – EFCC

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has accused commercial banks of colluding with government officials to re-loot recovered loot of the late dictator, Sani Abacha.

In December 2017, the Federal Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Switzerland on the return and monitoring of the $322 million Abacha loot.

The proceeds were intended for Conditional Cash Transfer under the Social Investment Programme which began in December 2016, under ex-president Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

The looted funds were meant to provide N5,000 monthly stipends to the most vulnerable Nigerians across the country.

However, on Sunday, a spokesperson for the EFCC, Dele Oyewale, in a statement, said that the anti-graft agency opened investigations into other alleged financial malpractices from the ministry; involving the COVID-19 funds and the World Bank- assisted loan coordinated by the Humanitarian Ministry to assist poor Nigerians.

The EFCC said, “Discreet investigations by the EFCC have opened other fraudulent dealings involving COVID -19 funds, the World Bank loan, Abacha recovered loot released to the ministry by the Federal Government to execute its poverty alleviation mandate. Investigations have also linked several interdicted and suspended officials of the ministry to the alleged financial malfeasance.

“It is instructive to stress that the commission’s investigations are not about individuals. The EFCC is investigating a system and intricate web of fraudulent practices. Banks involved in the alleged fraud are being investigated. Managing directors of the indicted banks have made useful statements to investigators digging into the infractions. Those found wanting will be prosecuted accordingly. Additionally, the EFCC has not cleared anyone allegedly involved in the fraud. Investigations are ongoing and advancing steadily. The public is enjoined to ignore any claim to the contrary.’’

The commission also revealed that N32.7 billion and $445,000 had been recovered from both past and suspended officials of the humanitarian ministry.

It added that the commission initiated investigations into the affairs of the humanitarian ministry inviting former minister, Sadiya Umar-Farouq, and her successor, Beta Edu, suspended by President Bola Tinubu in January for alleged abuse of office.

 

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EFCC recovers N32.7bn, $445,000, faults Betta Edu, Sadiya Umar-Farouq, Halima Shehu

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has faulted suspended Humanitarian Minister, Betta Edu, her predecessor, Sadiya Umar-Farouq, and the Coordinator of the National Social Insurance Programmes Agency, Halima Shehu, while revealing that a combined total of N32.7bn and $445,000 has been recovered so far from ministry.

The commission made the development known on Sunday via its official X handle in response to rumours concerning the progress of its investigations into the alleged financial misappropriation in the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

The statement signed by the spokesperson for the EFCC, Dele Oyewale, read, “The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has noticed the rising tide of commentaries, opinions, assumptions and insinuations concerning its progressive investigations into the alleged financial misappropriation in the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

“At the outset of investigations, past and suspended officials of the Humanitarian Ministry were invited by the Commission and investigations into the alleged fraud involving them have yielded the recovery of N32.7billion and $445,000 so far.

“Discreet investigations by the EFCC have opened other fraudulent dealings involving Covid -19 funds, the World Bank loan, Abacha recovered loot released to the Ministry by the Federal Government to execute its poverty alleviation mandate. Investigations have also linked several interdicted and suspended officials of the Ministry to the alleged financial malfeasance.

“It is instructive to stress that the Commission’s investigations are not about individuals. The EFCC is investigating a system and intricate web of fraudulent practices. Banks involved in the alleged fraud are being investigated. Managing Directors of the indicted banks have made useful statements to investigators digging into the infractions. Those found wanting will be prosecuted accordingly.

Additionally, the EFCC has not cleared anyone allegedly involved in the fraud. Investigations are ongoing and advancing steadily. The public is enjoined to ignore any claim to the contrary.

“On the issue of the works of the Commission against Naira abuse, dollarization of the economy and the enforcement of all extant laws relating to them, the EFCC appreciates the avalanche of public awakening, support and involvement demonstrated so far. Increasingly, members of the public are drawing the attention of the Commission to video recording of abuse of the Naira by Nigerians from all walks of life. These gestures amply demonstrate rising consciousness of the public to the sanctity of our national currency and the need for collaborative engagement to sustain the tempo.

“To this end, the Commission will always investigate and prosecute anyone involved in the abuse of the Naira. Old videos being exhumed and flying around for the attention of the Commission are noted as the Commission is sensitive to the fact that its Special Task Force against Naira Abuse and Dollarization of the economy commenced operations on February 7, 2024. However, going forward, new videos of such infractions will be investigated and prosecuted.

At the moment, the Commission is investigating several celebrities involved in Naira abuse. Many of them have made useful statements to the Commission and many more have been invited by investigators working on the matter. The EFCC will not relent in its no-sacred-cow mode of operations and the public should be wary of running afoul of laws against the crime.”

 

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CAC Places First Bank Records On Caveat Over Litigation

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The Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, has placed the records of First Bank of Nigeria (FBN) Holdings on caveat pending the resolution of the crisis rocking…

The Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, has placed the records of First Bank of Nigeria (FBN) Holdings on caveat pending the resolution of the crisis rocking the board of the bank as a result of multiple court cases filed by aggrieved directors.

The crisis rocking the bank stemmed from protests by shareholders who were kicking against the bank’s internal governance and shareholding structure, as a result of which some of them have taken their grievances to the court.

One of such is the case of Olusegun Samuel Onagoruwa v. FBN Holdings Plc in Suit No. FHC/L/CP/1271/2022), which is challenging the capacity of the Board of Directors of FBN to appoint new persons to fill vacant slots.

Onagoruwa in his suit is seeking “an order setting aside, nullifying, annulling and/or quashing the appointments and approvals of Mr. Olusola Adeeyo, Mr. Viswanathan Shankar, Mrs. Remilekun Adetola, Mr. Anil Dua and Mrs. Fatima Ibrahim as Non-Executive Directors of First Bank of Nigeria Limited made on the 20th day of March, 2024, by FBN Holdings PLC during the pendency of this action and in defiance of the subsisting order of this Honourable Court made on the 15th day of July, 2022.”

The motion also seeks an order restraining the above-named non-executive directors from acting or taking any steps as non-executive directors of the bank.

The current court case follows similar four other cases pending at the Federal High Court in Lagos and Abuja challenging the internal governance of FBN Limited, in addition to existing court injunctions restraining the bank from holding the last two Annual General Meetings which the bank went ahead to hold.

In a new twist to the crisis, the Corporate Affairs Commission in a letter entitled.

“Re: notification of pendency of suit no. fhc/l/cp/1575/23 against FBN holdings plc, and subsisting interim orders of the Federal High Court made on the 9th day of August 2023 restraining FBN holdings plc from holding or proceeding with its annual general meeting purportedly held on the 13th day of August 2023”, weighed in on litigations threatening to tear the old generation bank apart.

Signed on behalf of the Registrar General of CAC by Chidimma Maureen Nwite, the Commission in a letter to lawyers to some of the parties in court against FBN Holdings said: “This is to inform you that the record of FBN Holdings PLC RC: 916455 has been placed on caveat pending the determination of Suit No. FHC/L/CS/1575/2023.”

A shareholder, Mr. Olalekan Babalola, said “it is imperative for the authorities to find a solution to this lingering crisis as Nigeria cannot afford another major bank’s collapse at this critical time

He called for urgent resolution of all court cases in the overall interest of depositors, shareholders and other stakeholders of the bank before further damage is done to the oldest Nigerian bank.

 

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